Bus driver held in hunt for missing teenager

A man being questioned by police in Devon about the disappearance of an 18-year-old college student is believed to be a bus driver.

The man, aged 39, was arrested on suspicion of abducting Alicia Eborne, aged 18, who has been missing for a week. He has not been named.

There has been no trace of Ms Eborne since she left her home in the hamlet of Corntown, on the fringes of Dartmoor, at 8.45am last Friday to catch a bus to college. Officers believe that she walked the half-mile from Corntown to nearby Cornwood and caught a Plymouth-bound bus.

The man was arrested in Plymouth on Thursday night. He may be held for questioning at Plymouth's Charles Cross police station over the weekend. A Devon and Cornwall police spokeswoman said: "It is anticipated he is going to be with us for some time to come yet."

Police would not confirm that the man being held was a bus driver.

Officers continued to scour hedgerows and fields along the seven-mile bus route yesterday but found nothing.

Chief Superintendent Liam McGrath said: "We have to plan for all eventualities. Clearly we would hope as everybody does that Alicia will be found alive and well, and that may well happen. What we also have to do is follow all lines of inquiry that would lead us to gain evidence of any alternative."

Ms Eborne failed to attend her health and social care course at Plymouth College of Further Education last Friday morning, and missed her part-time job in a patisserie that afternoon, when she was due to collect her wages.

Her savings were untouched and her mobile phone had not been used since her disappearance, police said.

Her friends contacted the police when she missed a night out she had arranged in Plymouth last Friday.